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Wacky Real-Life Holidays for the Dragon at Heart

We all know us fantasy nerds love to celebrate. A new Wizarding World of Harry Potter expansion? Dress up like a wizard when you go explore it, of course! Game of Thrones back on again? Host a dinner celebration with GoT-themed foods. Watch a fun D&D show tonight? Draw all the characters and share the drawings with your friends!

So, when I was organizing my monthly work calendar and noticed there was an Appreciate A Dragon Day (January 16th) holiday I had to know more. Where did this dragon day come from? What are fellow nerds doing to honor this fabulous holiday? And how can I participate?

Chinese style dragon statue in temple by Nonnakrit

Well, that led me down a rabbit hole of research of other wacky fantasy-themed real-world holidays, and I thought I’d share my top nine with you! (Plus, three serious ones and one honorable mention, just in case you’d like to really fill up your calendar with literary fun. And, really, who doesn’t?)

Holi-Days

Appreciate a Dragon Day, January 16

This holiday started in 2004 by Donita K. Paul to celebrate the release of the book DragonSpell (WaterBrook, 2004). Each year, they encourage participants to choose and share a favorite dragon. The dragon can be from literature or history or real-life—I’m looking at you, Komodo dragons—or even sculptures!

National Winnie the Pooh Day, January 18

Inspired by the beloved honey-loving bear, Winnie the Pooh Day celebrates and honors author A. A. Milne’s birthday. People share their favorite quotes and images from the children’s books.

Pooh, honey, and the flood by E. H. Shepard

Tell a Fairy Tale Day, February 26

An informal celebration that allows for the perfect opportunities to read some classic and modern fairytales. Generally, they’re filled with magic and dragons, princesses and unicorns, fairies and talking plants.

National Tolkien Reading Day, March 25

Started in 2003 by the Tolkien Society, this day encourages folks to read the wonderful works of J.R.R. Tolkien and post on social media with the hashtag #TolkienReadingDay. The Tolkien Society chose March 25th because that’s when Sauron fell in The Lord of the Rings!

The Hobbit by Bruna Wretzky

International Harry Potter Day, May 2

The anniversary of the battle of Hogwarts, need I say more? It’s an epic day in the Harry Potter universe and one that should be remembered. Dress up as a witch or wizard, pour over your favorite book or watch your favorite movie, sob over the deaths of your favorite characters, and celebrate the nerdom that is J. K. Rowling’s most famous work. (Yer a wizard!)

Donald Duck Day, June 9

It’s Donald Duck’s birthday! He debuted in “The Wise Little Hen” on June 9, 1934, and on his 50th birthday L.A. Mayor Tom Bradley declared June 9a holiday and built him a statue. Use #DonaldDuckDay to post on social media all about the funny little duck and all your favorite animations of him. Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy!

The Wise Little Hen (cover)

National Garfield the Cat Day, June 19

One of my favorite cool cats growing up, Garfield gets his own special day! Most folks who celebrate his birthday share some fun drawings, quotes, memories or Garfield-like tendencies. (Mondays, anyone?)

Hobbit Day, September 22

Long live Bilbo and Frodo Baggins, for September 22 is their joint birthdays! These hobbits are from J.R.R. Tolkien’s work Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, so celebrate Middle Earth–style with lots of food—luncheon, afternoon tea, dinner, and supper, of course—and drinks…and don’t forget the dragon fireworks!

Lord of the Rings - Bilbo's Birthday Party

Mad Hatter Day, October 6

This one celebrates Lewis Carroll’s book Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and the famous hat-wearing rabbit around—the Mad Hatter. This day is usually celebrated by general silliness, lots of tea, and by wearing the most fabulous (or silly) top hats!

Holi-Months

While it’s fun to celebrate dragons and live like a hobbit for a day, there are some great holidays for writers of all kinds out there, too. Here are some more serious holidays to pen on your calendar.

National Library Lovers Month, February

Visit your local library and show them some love!

The Old Library at Trinity College Dublin by Maria_Globetrotter

Banned Book Week, September

Consider the freedom to express ideas of all colors, even those unorthodox or unpopular.

NaNoWriMo, November

Write a 50,000-word book in a month and support your fellow writers as you do!

NaNoWriMo 2016 "Rocket Launch" Poster

Honorable Mention

Star Wars Day, May 4

Okay, okay, okay, so yeah, this one is obviously in the science fiction realm not fantasy but come on, I can’t pass up the chance to say, “May the fourth be with you!” to all my co-workers…and neither should you!

May the Fourth be with You by Bomdesignz

There’s always a reason to celebrate, especially with us fantasy lovers, so take time to enjoy the nerdy things in life!

Title image by Dafne Cholet.

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